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February 2024 Newsletter

The calm before the storm…



General Election

If the Prime Minister surprises the commentariat of Westminster by calling a 2 May election, then this will be my last newsletter before the election is called.

 

No matter what Rishi Sunak has said otherwise, the Tories have been preparing for May: changing the election finance limits, bringing forward the Spring budget to 6 March, speeding up their candidate selections, and increasing their direct mails and digital output. Rishi Sunak knows that he is running out of road. He has been losing by-election after by-election, and the right of his party is increasingly out of control, perhaps best encapsulated by the birth of PopCon or “Popular Conservatism”. A big loss in the local and mayoral elections in England on 2 May, followed by another defeat in Blackpool South, and then an increase in small boat crossings over the summer – this could all spell electoral wipe-out for the Tories in the autumn. Even an economic up-turn in the autumn would not stave off the narrative of an un-elected Prime Minister that bottled the opportunity to call a May election, just to cling onto power that bit longer, while our country remains without direction.

 

So hold onto your hats and get ready for a six-week whirlwind!



Campaigning

We have been out knocking doors right across the county and thank you so much to all of you who have joined us – especially those that have come out for the first time. In addition to our in-person canvassing sessions, John Bramley has got the phone banking team running at full tilt on Saturday mornings. If you can join us out on the doorstep or on the phones, we would so be grateful for any help. We also need assistance with leaflet delivery, and there is a new batch of leaflets about to drop. Please contact Ben Levy on 07596 596351 to get involved.

 

The campaign is building, and it is very motivating to see everyone chipping in where they can – bring on the General Election!



Community Action

I was pleased to chair the public meeting at Crundale Hall to address the odour, environmental and public health concerns coming from the Withyhedge Landfill site. I was joined by representatives from Natural Resources Wales, Public Health Wales, Pembrokeshire County Council and the owner of the site, David Neal. Too often government agencies and public bodies fail to recognise who they are ultimately responsible to, and so it was incredibly important to allow the voice of the community to be heard.

 

I spent a wonderful afternoon with the teams from Haverfordwest Community Garden and Tir Coed at the Havergardd Open Day. There was a full array of garden activities that included willow weaving, bird feeders and seed sowing – all with the sun shining and a delicious lunch! It was a great way to speak with members of the community that are not politically engaged and had given up all hope in the political process. I also visited Pembrokeshire People First with Jo Ambrose and met with their Citizen Champions. It was very inspiring to see all the work they do around the Learning Disability Charter and to hear about what they really need from their local MP. Finally, I took part in the opening of the brand-new McDonalds in Milford Haven – I am excited for my chicken selects dinner after our next canvassing session in Milford!



Policy

Lots of people have lost faith in this dying Tory Government in Westminster and are looking to Labour to provide that long term plan to get Britain’s future back. Ahead of the election our focus has turned to providing that long term vision for Pembrokeshire. As you may have seen from the fantastic boards that have gone up at the new campaign centre, the focus of our campaign will be to:

  • Deliver growth in our local economy

  • Fix our broken immigration system

  • Build a modern local NHS

  • Secure investment for green jobs in our county

  • Provide opportunities for our young people


We are in the process of developing these pledges. Please get in touch if you would like to contribute.

 

You can keep up to date and help share what I am up to throughout the month by following me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

 

As always, thank you for your support!

 

Very best wishes,

 


Henry Tufnell

 

Parliamentary Candidate for Mid & South Pembrokeshire

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